Cam Hardie rides out claim as Marquand takes Champion Apprentice lead

Cam Hardie has conceded that his task to be crowned Stobart Champion Apprentice on QIPCO British Champions Day has been made harder after riding out his claim.

Hardie, who registered a landmark 95th success on Rum Swizzle at Lingfield yesterday, will have three clear days remaining as a 3lb claimer, but will ride off level terms from this Sunday onwards.

His victory on Rum Swizzle took him to 27 victories in the Stobart Jockeys Championships, but his key rival for the prize, Tom Marquand, soon hit back with a treble at Bath. Marquand is now four wins ahead of Hardie, passing Jack Garritty along the way to be title race leader on 31 winners.

Hardie, who along with Marquand is based with Richard Hannon, told the Racing Post: “I’d like to thank everyone who has got me this far – all the trainers and owners who have supported me – but I’ll have to play with the big boys now. I’m going into unknown territory but hopefully there are plenty of people behind me to keep my career going forward.

“I’d love to win it (Champion Apprentice), but with the others still claiming and my claim gone it’s going to be tough. I’ll just do my best and see what happens.”

The champions of the Stobart Jockey Championship titles will be awarded on QIPCO British Champions Day. You can buy your tickets to see the crowning of this year’s Champion Jockey now.